The partners at LDR Ventures never sought out to become venture capitalists, as is in vogue these days amongst many Silicon Valley employees and investors who receive their first big windfall of cash. In fact, the partners helped other companies to get their windfalls of cash, aren’t in Silicon Valley, and don’t have degrees from Stanford, Harvard, or Wharton Business School.
What they do have, is experience leading early stage, as well multibillion dollar, global fashion, retail, eCommerce and consumer products companies; and a desire to teach and help passionate founders succeed.
After years of casually mentoring entrepreneurs around Los Angeles including at the accelerator Launchpad LA, they noticed there was a group of founders who were largely ignored and struggled to gain the same investment interest as their counter parts. This group was minority and women led companies, especially in fashion and traditional retail sectors. If you weren’t male and in tech, or had a fancy new app, then you weren’t getting funded. The only solution was to get off the sidelines, become the VC, and start LDR Ventures.
Since that time, LDR Ventures has refined their investment approach and
focused on an active, hands on strategy to add value to entrepreneurs who may have little experience in business operations beyond creating their first product or service. The LDR team brings expertise in brand building, sales and marketing, ecommerce, business development, finance & operations. They’ve found this is a perfect fit for founders who have gotten initial traction and are ready to rapidly scale but aren’t quite sure what the next step is and need to be resourceful.
The other thing that sets this LA based team apart from Silicon Valley and east coast firms, is that they are patient and strategic. They are not looking to extract the maximum profits for the least amount of investment, and add splashy billion dollar exits to their resumes. They feel it’s easier to consistently hit singles than always trying hit the home run. More then Venture Capitalists, the team are Venture Coaches.
Los Angeles is a young community within the startup universe; ripe for transformation in the way that VC’s typically approach investing. Look for LDR to continue to pick out great opportunities and become one of the most innovative VC firms in Southern California. The companies they’ve invested in and advised, most of which were seed stage, have created over a billion dollars in market value to date.
Jim Scharpf is a Venture Partner at LDR Ventures in Los Angeles
Contact him at [email protected]